Inspiration, stitch by stitch.
“The Journey of Hope in America: Quilts Inspired by President Barack Obama” explores the historic election of a black president with quilts from a wide range of styles: art quilts, folk art and traditional quilts. The exhibit at the National Afro-American Museum and Cultural Center in Wilberforce illustrates a broad range of techniques and materials, including piecing, painting, appliqué, embroidery, dyeing, photography, beading and digital transfer.
The quilters are from around the world, representing China, Dubai, Jamaica and Mexico, in addition to artists from the United States, including several Butler County residents.
Internationally known quilt artist, author and historian Carolyn L. Mazloomi of West Chester Twp. curated the show. She’s brought together a diverse group of 95 fiber artists representing a variety of races, generations and religions. The exhibit will remain at the museum for a year before touring the country and different parts of the world.
“This particular exhibition is a traveling exhibition and it opened in Yokohama, Japan, in September,” Mazloomi said.
From Japan, the show moved to Wilberforce, with a final stop scheduled for South Africa.
West Chester Twp.’s Carol Gary Staples’ quilts “Inspired Change” and “Unparalleled Journey” can both be found hanging at the Wilberforce exhibit. Staples’ quilt “Inspired Change” was one of 44 quilts at President Obama’s inauguration.
“Being an African-American in my late 40’s, this is an unbelievable event for us,” Staples said. “We just didn’t think it’d happen in our lifetime, we didn’t know the country was there yet. It’s really personal for us.”
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